It’s been 35 years since he was last involved, but talk to any Florida Gators or Georgia Bulldogs and ask who’s the most singular dominant player in the long history of their series? The simple answer is: Herschel Walker.
Walker burst on the scene in 1980 and in a remarkable National Championship run that year for the ‘Dawgs, announced his presence in the rivalry right away. 238 of the toughest sledgehammer yards as a freshman in Georgia’s dramatic last minute win. Obviously, everyone talks about Buck Belue completing the pass to Lindsay Scott for his catch and run to keep UGA unbeaten. But, 238 yards rushing?
That’s still the record in the rivalry….. 37 years later.
The 1981 season Walker followed up with a mere 192 yards rushing, including a dramatic up and over score on the goal line in the fourth quarter, as Georgia once again triumphed 26-21.
Then came the most memorable of his three appearances.
219 yards of pure pile-driving domination in a Bulldogs 44-0 rout of what had been a 20th ranked Florida team. Walker ran over, through, carried and bulldozed the Orange and Blue defense that day and it’s still talked about in the 2010’s.
That’s a total of 649 rushing yards in just three meetings. Or 216 yards per game average in the three Bulldog wins. Staggering.
Herschel would go on to the 1982 Heisman Trophy and eventually turn pro, going to the USFL and yes, Donald Trump’s New Jersey Generals. (above)
But long before his USFL and later NFL success, he was smashing Gators.
Observe the quick montage of Herschel’s TD highlights, just from the Florida series:
Say what you want about how good present day running back’s Nick Chubb and Sony Michel are for the unbeaten 2017 Georgia team, and they are good. They aren’t in the same realm of size, power running and speed, as Herschel Walker was with his three year results against the Gators to back it up.
No one is… or apparently, ever will be.
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